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Upgrading and Fixing Computers: Do-it-Yourself For Dummies® by Andy Rathbone

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Chapter 6. Adding or Replacing a Hard Drive

Topics and tasks in this chapter

  • Buying a new drive

  • Installing a portable hard drive

  • Backing up your Windows drive with a system image

  • Identifying your PC's drive type

  • Upgrading or replacing your Windows drive

  • Reinstalling Windows from a system image

  • Adding a second internal drive

  • Partitioning and formatting a second internal drive

  • Defragmenting a hard drive

  • Checking for disk errors

  • Expanding a partition to fill a drive

  • Setting an IDE drive's jumpers

People pile their junk into closets, garages, and kitchen drawers. Computers stuff everything onto their humming hard drives.

Unfortunately, hard drives suffer from the same problem as their household counterparts. They're rarely large enough to hold everything, especially after a few years of accumulating odds and ends.

Every new Windows version consumes more hard drive space than the previous version, and new programs always grow larger, too. The Internet keeps dishing up stuff that's fun to store. E-mail keeps piling up. And those digital camera photos are larger than ever.

To deal with the constant information flow, some people add a second hard drive, either inside their PC or by plugging a portable hard drive into one of their PC's USB or FireWire ports. Others take the plunge and replace their Windows drive with a faster, larger hard drive.

This chapter shows you how to add more storage to your PC by adding a second hard drive, or by upgrading your Windows drive. As a bonus, it explains how to back ...

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